By Charissa Zehr
Democracy, transparency and good governance become catchphrases during political campaigns and election cycles. In Haiti, these issues contribute to the deepening debate around mining. As the legitimacy of Haiti’s government continues to be questioned, some of Mennonite Central Committee’s partner organizations have expressed concerns that a proposed mining law could be passed by presidential decree without consent of the legislative branch and, more importantly, without consulting the Haitian people.
In 2013, the World Bank provided technical support to Haiti’s government to update the country’s mining law, making it more attractive to the Canadian and U.S. mining companies already interested in exploiting Haiti’s estimated $20 billion in mineral wealth.
The draft law is concerning for multiple reasons…